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Sometimes there are Mets memories that you have from childhood that just stick with you. It had been gnawing at me that I had a recollection that the Mets were forced to start all three catchers for a game. I asked some Mets buddies and nobody could verify it for me. But then, there is good old Baseball Reference. Dig deep, and thou shall find.
And what exactly made me start thinking about that again?
The Mets have gotten hit by the injury bug. Not only has Jacob deGrom landed on the Injured List, but Carlos Carrasco has yet to make his debut since arriving via a trade, Noah Syndergaard is still rehabbing from Tommy John surgery. So now 3/5 of the starting rotation is down. As for the regulars, J.D. Davis has been on the IL for the second time, and Brandon Nimmo has had to sit also for a second time thus far this season. And now Jeff McNeil is forced out of the lineup. Not to mention that Seth Lugo and Dellin Betances have both been MIA from the Mets bullpen.
Hence, it harkens back to almost 50 years ago. The Mets were primed to get back to the post season in 1972 when they made a blockbuster trade for Rusty Staub. And they thought they got a big-time third baseman when they stole All Star shortstop Jim Fregosi (LOL) from the California Angels. But before the season could even get started, Gil Hodges collapsed and died from a heart attack. It truly became a season to forget.
The Mets announced that they will, at times, be sporting their "racing stripe" uniforms in honor of the 30th Anniversary of the 1986 World Series Championship team. I have always had a fascination with the Mets uniforms and to be quite honest, I absolutely hated those uniforms. The home uniforms were bad enough, but the road uniforms had a weird block lettering and then a silly looking script. Heck, Keith Hernandez has so often made his opinion of those uniforms known during broadcasts, calling them "hideous." I am a traditionalist, and although I liked the brief appearance of the blue and orange piping on the sleeves during the Lee Mazzilli era in the late seventies, early eighties, I am truly partial to the traditional home uniforms. But my favorite is the traditional away jerseys with the tiffany style lettering on the front and the full block numbers on the front and back.
And uniform numbers worn by the players always seemed to pique my interest. I am sure most people can be presented with a number and immediately associate it with a specific Mets player. In fact, sometimes you see a number on a player’s back and you either love the player or simply the way the number looks and all of a sudden that becomes YOUR number.